Allan McNish looks for a double upturn in fortune in the third round of the DTM (German Touring Car Masters) at Spa-Francorchamps on Sunday (15 May). Allan McNish. Photo by Audi Communication Motorsport. "Factory" Audi ace McNish ...
Allan McNish looks for a double upturn in fortune in the third round of the DTM (German Touring Car Masters) at Spa-Francorchamps on Sunday (15 May).
"Factory" Audi ace McNish retired from the last DTM race while "lost" the inaugural Le Mans Endurance Series title at the Belgian track near Liege last September.
The 35-year-old Monaco-based Scotsman looked set to score his first DTM points in only his second race but a mid-race collision ended McNish's challenge in the Siemens-supported Audi A4DTM.
That disappointment at the EuroSpeedway two weeks ago (1 May) combined with his last Spa misery (12 Sep 2004) merely makes McNish doubly determined to succeed on this occasion.
"My Audi A4DTM had improved during each session at the EuroSpeedway and in the race, things were looking good and I felt, after the first scheduled pit-stop, that a top-eight was certainly something that could be achieved."
"Back-to-back victories at the N?rburgring (D) and Silverstone (GB), plus a second place at Monza (It), had earned my co-driver Pierre Kaffer and I a four-point lead in the LM P1 class but those title dreams were dashed when pure bad luck saw Pierre tangle with a back-marker."
The magnificent 4.333-mile, 15-corner track in the Ardennes region of Belgium is also a venue that Allan has driven a DTM car - he drove last year's championship winning Audi A4 model in a test there in March.
Allan continued: "Although it was last year's model, for the first time this season I've got an idea of what to expect from a DTM car at a relevant circuit which should speed up my process of setting up the car and the actual test at Spa went well for me so that's another positive."
"The Spa circuit is one of the best in the world - it certainly ranks in my all-time top-three. I first raced there in 1988, alongside Mika Hakkinen in the same Vauxhall-Lotus team, and finished third. I claimed 'pole' by over a second for a Formula 3000 race [26 Aug 1995] in and tested and raced a Formula One car there in 2001 and '02."
"I'm hoping to qualify for the top-10 'Super Pole' run-off and go on to score my first DTM points."
The third round of the DTM will consist of 23-laps (99.66-miles) and marks the first time Europe's most competitive and popular touring car series has been held at Spa.